Skip to main content

University Mission Statement and Related Documents

The University’s abbreviated mission statement reads:

As a Jesuit Catholic university, John Carroll inspires individuals to excel in learning, leadership, and service in the region and in the world.

John Carroll University Catholicity Statement

John Carroll University Mission Statement (full)

John Carroll University, founded in 1886, is a private, coeducational, Catholic, and Jesuit university. It provides programs in the liberal arts, sciences, education, and business at the undergraduate level, and in selected areas at the master’s level. The University also offers its facilities and personnel to the Greater Cleveland community.

As a university, John Carroll is committed to the transmission and enrichment of the treasury of human knowledge with the autonomy and freedom appropriate to a university. As a Catholic university, it is further committed to seek and synthesize all knowledge, including the wisdom of Christian revelation. In the pursuit of this integration of knowledge, the University community is enriched by scholarship representing the pluralistic society in which we live. All can participate freely in the intellectual, moral, and spiritual dialog necessary to this pursuit. Within this dialog, in which theological and philosophical questions play a crucial role, students have the opportunity to develop, synthesize, and live a value system based on respect for and critical evaluation of facts; on intellectual, moral, and spiritual principles which enable them to cope with new problems; and on the sensitivity and judgment that prepare them to engage in responsible social action.

In a Jesuit university, the presence of Jesuits and colleagues who are inspired by the vision of Saint Ignatius Loyola, founder of the Society of Jesus in 1540, is of paramount importance. This vision, which reflects the value system of the Gospels, is expressed in the Spiritual Exercises, the source of Jesuit life and mission. To education the Jesuit spirit brings a rationality appropriately balanced by human affection, an esteem for the individual as a unique person, training in discerning choice, openness to change, and a quest for God’s greater glory in the use of this world’s goods. Commitment to the values that inspired the Spiritual Exercises promotes justice by affirming the equal dignity of all persons and seeks balance between reliance on divine assistance and natural capacities. The effort to combine faith and culture takes on different forms at different times in Jesuit colleges and universities. Innovation, experiment, and training for social leadership are essential to the Jesuit tradition.

At the same time, John Carroll University welcomes students and faculty from different religious backgrounds and philosophies. Dedicated to the total development of the human, the University offers an environment in which every student, faculty, and staff person may feel welcomed. Within this environment there is concern for the human and spiritual developmental needs of the students and a deep respect for the freedom and dignity of the human person. A faculty not only professionally qualified, but also student oriented, considers excellence in interpersonal relationships as well as academic achievement among its primary goals.

The University places primary emphasis on instructional excellence. It recognizes the importance of research in teaching as well as in the development of the teacher. In keeping with its mission, the University especially encourages research that assists the various disciplines in offering solutions to the problems of faith in the modern world, social inequities, and human needs.

The commitment to excellence at John Carroll University does not imply limiting admissions to the extremely talented student only. Admission is open to all students who desire and have the potential to profit from an education suited to the student’s needs as a person and talents as a member of society.

The educational experience at John Carroll University provides opportunities for the students to develop as total human persons. They should be well grounded in liberalizing, humanizing arts and sciences; proficient in the skills that lead to clear, persuasive expression; trained in the intellectual discipline necessary to pursue a subject in depth; aware of the interrelationship of all knowledge and the need for integration and synthesis; able to make a commitment to a tested scale of values and to demonstrate the self-discipline necessary to live by those values; alert to learning as a life-long process; open to change as they mature; respectful of their own culture and that of others; aware of the interdependence of all humanity; and sensitive to the need for social justice in response to current social pressures and problems.

Catholicity Statement

In May 2008, the John Carroll University Board of Directors adopted the University’s Catholicity statement, The Jesuit Catholic Identity of John Carroll University, which describes the University’s Jesuit Catholic character as being a single reality based on the integration of faith and culture – this was Pope John Paul II’s primary message in his statement on Catholic higher education–Ex Corde Ecclesiae. We developed our Catholicity statement through a widely inclusive dialogue over nearly two years with people of all faiths.

To view the full text of the Catholicity Statement in PDF format, please click here.

To see our new Catholicity Brochure in PDF format, please click here.

Reaffirmation of our Jesuit Catholic Mission

John Carroll University’s Catholic and Jesuit Mission and Identity is Affirmed

In his letter dated September 22, 2016, Fr. Brian Paulson, S.J., Provincial of the Chicago-Detroit Province , explained that Fr. Adolfo Nicolás, then Superior General of the Society of Jesus confidently affirmed the Catholic and Jesuit identity of John Carroll University. This affirmation is the result of a yearlong Mission Priority Examen process of self-study and priority setting, peer review, and approval by the Provincial. John Carroll was one of only three schools identified to undergo the first round of this process.

Fr. Paulson explained that the Father General gave a “positive evaluation” of John Carroll’s Mission Examen and “indicated that the catalog of ways you already embody the Characteristics of Jesuit Higher Education, is impressive.” Fr. Nicolás was also “very encouraged by the [peer] evaluation and noted that the visitors ‘confidently affirm the strong, lived commitment of the University to its Jesuit, Catholic mission values and endorse the University community’s vision and priorities for strengthening this commitment in the future.'”

Staff